J.R. Solonche

Flash Flood

A few drops
of rain, not even
enough to chase
me inside, but
a moth on the desert
of a hosta leaf
has found its oasis.


Nominated for the National Book Award and twice-nominated for the Pulitzer Prize, J.R. Solonche is the author of twenty-six books of poetry and coauthor of another.


 

 

David Adès

Martyr

Who is that woman
walking so serenely
between agitations
of us and them,

as if there were a middle way,
and what does she hope

to achieve, so willingly
forfeiting her life
to crossfire, or the deadly
passions of the mob?


David Adès is an Australian poet whose most recent book Afloat in Light is available through UWA Publishing at https://uwap.uwa.edu.au/products/afloat-in-light.


 

 

Christine Huang

Morning Offering

The chilly 6 o’clock air weaves through the bedroom window
as I kneel on the wooden floor
and when the stillness of the room is disrupted by my whispers,
I know that my day is renewed.


Christine Huang has a bad habit of writing between midnight and sunrise.


 

 

Tess Russell

Soulbound

We’ll bind ourselves so tightly,
physically and abstractly,
in this world
that the universe won’t be able to
unbind us in the next.


Tess Russell is an aspiring writer, who, like many before her, attempts to understand at least a mere fragment of love and life.


 

 

Steve Klepetar

Austin Street

We went to see the blind man juggle
in the middle of Austin Street

where he stood in moonlight,
a figure in a dream, until the police

led him away, skipping into the night,
an actor torn from a comic film.


Steve Klepetar has spent the pandemic pretending to study calculus and preparing to try out for the Olympic Reading Team.


 

 

Steve Klepetar

Wraiths

It’s possible to see them
if you lean out the window
and hold your glass just so,

but even then, they remain
wrapped in fog
that billows from the sea,

so what you perceive,
if you see anything at all,
might be a shade of a shade,

a little movement at the edge
of darkness, a streetlight
reflected against icy trees.


Steve Klepetar has spent the pandemic pretending to study calculus and preparing to try out for the Olympic Reading Team.


 

 

William Cullen Jr.

Perspective

A still frog is staring
at the vanishing point
where a fly disappears
only to turn up again
in the watercolor.


William Cullen Jr., a veteran who works in social services in New York City, has recently had his poetry appear in Frogpond, Halfway Down the Stairs and Modern Haiku.


 

 

Howie Good

Zen Cone

Giant radio telescopes restlessly
scan the cosmos, but I’m in no rush,
living someplace so Zen it doesn’t
have a doctor or a police department
or even anyone on standby to plow
the roads in winter or fix the potholes
in spring, only worn-down mountains
and gray trees and the sad beauty of old
dilapidated things everywhere you look.


Howie Good plays the ukulele pretty well and the guitar pretty bad.